The Gate of the Year

Dr. Ray Pritchard

On Christmas Day 1939, King George VI of England gave a brief radio address to his troubled nation. England was already at war with Germany. Soon all of Europe would be plunged into the horror of brutal, unrestrained warfare.

Hoping to calm the troubled hearts of his countrymen, the king offered words of encouragement as the storm clouds gathered overhead. He ended his remarks by quoting the first lines of a hitherto unknown poem by Minnie Haskins called The Gate of Year. It has since become known around the world:

I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:
“Give me a light, that I may tread safely into the unknown!”  
And he replied: “Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God.
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.”

What a word that is for us today. No one but God knows what the future holds. Let us do as the poet suggested and place our hands in the hand of Almighty God. And let us go out into the unknown future with confidence, knowing that if God go with us, we need not fear the future. To walk with the Lord is the greatest of all joys, and it is indeed safer than a known way.

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